By Joe Utichi
Paws for applause: dogs featured in the documentaries The Truffle Hunters and Stray have shared the top prize at the annual Fido Awards, presented today in London, which recognize the best canine appearances in cinema. The pair picked up the “Best in the World” collar and also shared the “Dog Dox” prize at the irreverent ceremony, presided over by journalist Toby Rose.
Actors Kerry Fox and Christopher Biggins were among the guests at the Fidos’ pop-up in London’s trendy Coal Drops Yard, and plenty of four-legged friends were also in attendance. Chloé Zhao’s Nomadland continued to bolster its awards haul, winning the “Mutt Moment” prize for the black retriever cross in the movie. Pearl, the beagle from Spenser Confidential, took “Blockbuster Bowser”; Theia, the Scottish Dearhound in One Way to Denmark won “Comedy Canine”; the dogs from 23 Walks scored “Rom-Com Rover”; and the canine cast of The United States vs. Billie Holiday won for “Historical Hound”.
Elsewhere, the “Palm Dog USA” award went to the pitbull Jeter in the Oscar-winning short Two Distant Strangers, and the “FiDogManitarian” prize went to the short Save Ralph, by Humane Society International, which advocates for saving the animal kingdom – dogs included – from animal testing. The stop-motion puppet that plays Ralph, a rabbit voiced by Taika Waititi, was on hand to accept the prize with puppet maker Andy Gent (Isle of Dogs, The Grand Budapest Hotel).
“Dogs have shown themselves as a crucial comfort in these lockdown days and have once again demonstrated their ability to steal a big-screen scene,” said Rose, who is also responsible for the long-running Palm Dog awards in Cannes. Quentin Tarantino showed up to the 2019 ceremony there to collect the golden collar for the dog belonging to Brad Pitt’s character in his Once Upon a Time… In Hollywood.